Mantras to Live By


mantra (Photo credit: mailumes)

Words are powerful tools, capable of reeking destruction, livening spirits, conveying emotion, and even bolstering a person’s will to believe — in whatever he wants to believe in.

The word “mantra” is a commonly used word in the English language today. Its origin, however, comes from ancient Sanskrit. Broken down, it quite literally means “an instrument of thought.”

Mantras are instrumental in Vedic tradition and are used to obtain another level of concentration and focus, meditation in many cases. They work by creating a bond between the chanter and the core idea underlying the words, not the words themselves. Through vigilant repetition, other distractions are slowly eliminated from the mind; the person can create a clear path for the thoughts to take effect.

While many don’t practice true meditation and make use of mantras in the raw sense, I believe that binding yourself to a series of words and ideas — at least to repeat internally, can be really powerful. Understanding what you believe in and what you feel you need to accept to be happy and strong is essential in life. How else can a person move forward without some sort of direction? It’s nearly impossible. The roads we travel on may not always be straight and freshly tarred, but without any path to move on, we would all be utterly lost.

I have a few mantras that I find myself repeating everyday, just to keep myself on the path I know I want to be on. I don’t sit down and say them verbatim, but their ideas stay with me and I turn to my internal deposit box when I need a refresher when their strength (and mine) wanes. I believe having too many mantras to live by can be overwhelming, as they can often evolve into a rigid set of rules to follow. But having enough to count down on one hand means you’ve got them down firm, right in your palm.

My mantras are simple: reminders to promises I’ve made to myself, to the world and a higher Being that I’m sure is listening.

1. Stay strong. You don’t get to say what you “deserve,” but it’s pertinent that you at least get through whatever problems come your way.

2. Don’t go seeking love; it has to come on its own. Dive headfirst when it comes, but remember that love from anyone can have a secret expiration date. That’s just life — everything ends so something can begin.

3. There is a huge difference between being negative and being realistic. You can still dream and have a guard against failure without being “pessimistic.”

4. Someone will always be greater, but your capacities are great in themselves. You don’t need to change the world to make an imprint. Do what you can, but do it also because you want to.

5. Sometimes it’s okay to throw a hissy fit because you’re up to your neck in whatever it is that’s crappy. Just remember to phase out of it and to gain perspective again. Life is still pretty great when you’ve got food, clothes and a world of opportunities at your feet. And for most of us — that really is the case.

What are your daily mantras? How do they help you in your everyday life?


3 thoughts on “Mantras to Live By

  1. “Knowledge is power” has, and forever will be my mantra. I see every day as an opportunity to expand upon my knowledge, go through a new experience, and/or learn from any mistakes that I might have made. It is the quintessential way to become a more mature, well-rounded person that can positively shape the world.

    • I agree! I came back and read this post one day, and it actually helped me because I even forgot I felt this way. Maybe we should write out daily mantras and actually READ them daily! 🙂

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